Thursday, June 29, 2006


There is no company on earth that is able to market to a toddler like McDonald's. In an amazing feat of marketing genius, the artery clogging moguls at McDonald's have successfully gotten into the brain of my just 18 short months.

We're driving down the street and Maddie screams, "DONALD'S!"

ME: "Dude, did she just say McDonald's?"

Zak: "Sounded like it."

Me: "How would she know, recognize, want and understand the fun of McDonald's?"

Zak: "Tippi takes the kids there sometimes. She likes french fries."

Me: "Oh my God. We're in trouble."

Zak: "She also likes Burger King. When you work late, sometimes we go there for dinner. She even wears the crown and dips her fries in ranch dressing."

At first we thought it was just a coincidence that she said McDonald's when we passed one, but now she does it every time, no matter where the McDonald's is. If it is in her eyesight, "DONALD'S!" comes out of her mouth. And I don't stop (or drive thru). Yet.

Monday, June 26, 2006

No! Yes?

Like all toddlers, Maddie loves to tell me NO! She will say this as an answer to any question. It didn't occur to me until recently that she just may not be being sassy on purpose (can you believe it?!), but she really may not know the difference between yes and no. So, I started a little experiment.

Whenever Maddie says, "NO!" to a specific question that I know she must mean yes, I will ask her to clarify.

"Maddie, do you want to go outside?"


"Do you mean, yes?"

"yes," she agrees (all quiet and soft and sweetly).

"Maddie, do you want some ice cream?"


"Are you sure you don't mean, yes?"


"Do you want broccoli?"


"Do you mean yes?"


Friday, June 23, 2006

Today at the Doctor

Today was Maddie's last "well baby" visit to the doctor. After 18 months of countless shots, she is DONE until she is five years old. Thank God. I was also really happy that she kept the same doctor for her babyhood. Dr. Voss took really great care of not just Maddie, but also Zak and I for the last 18 months. We will miss her a TON!

Maddie is 32 inches tall, and weighs 24.2 pounds. That is exactly in the 50% percentile for her age.

Keeping her occupied at the doctor's office is no easy task, and it is a TWO parent task. Since Zak is currently, unemployed (hee hee), he was able to come too. Maddie just wants to play, play, play and touch everything in site. The problem is "everything" involves germ ridden doorknobs, armrests, magazines, and books. I must have Purell'ed her hands 5 times. I'm obsessed.

Once we were in the room, we played with "sticks" (tongue depressors), we "cleaned" with tissues, we pushed buttons on the scale, spun around on the doctor's chair and just had a grand ole time. Towards the end, when I was running out of tricks, I gave Maddie my lip gloss after showing her how to use it. She "put on Mommy's lipstick" for a good five minutes.

It was just too cute, and I was so happy I had my camera with me for these shots. She would poke out her little lips and run the gloss over them. She's mama's little trick monkey.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

We found a house!

I suppose I was on such a tangent on the previous post, I forgot to say that we FOUND A HOUSE on our trip! We made an offer, went back and forth on the price, and signed a contract! If all goes well with the inspections, we will close on August 15.

It's on the north side of the city just off the outer loop (for those of you who know the San Antonio area).

Funny, that was really the point of the post, but I forgot to write about it.

How (not) to sell a house

Zak and I probably went into 30 houses in 36 hours when we were in San Antonio, soon to be our new home town. Let me tell you, people are gross, and should be ASHAMED of what their houses look like when they are on the market.

I will be the first to admit that my house can be quite the pit at times. I'm a clutter queen. BUT, now that my house is on the market, it is SUPER clean and clutter free. Hello? I want someone to BUY it.....give me lots 'o cash... QUICKLY! Why would I leave my crap out for all to see? I honestly just don't get it.

I kinda blame the realtor for this too. Any self respecting realtor should be obligated to tell their clients to pick up, turn the lights on, light a candle, clean up the dog poop in the back yard! By the way, I don't want to see a photo of your 80 year old grandma, she's a sweetie but put it away.

I need to picture myself living in the house, and if I cannot see beyond all of YOUR stuff, then I will miss out on what a great house you have.

We only saw one house that was plain dirty, and just one house that you could tell were smokers. The rest of the homes were kinda cluttery, and only one or two looked like the owners put a lot of time into staging it. There are shows on HGTV that help people with staging their homes, which is just a really nice way of telling people to fix it up or it won't sell, dumbass.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

PaPa ROCKS the house (and fixes it too)

Just a quick shout out to my dad, Maddie's PaPa, who took great care of me, Zak, the house, and Maddie over the past week. My dad watched Maddie for us so we could go to San Antonio to look at houses on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. It's not easy being with The Girl by yourself, AND on top of that, he needed to keep the house in tip top "show" shape for Realtors.

He fixed, he cleaned and he diapered. He bathed and he fixed some more. We totally wore him out and finally quit us, and left for Dallas this morning.

THANKS DAD!!!! I love you.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

18 months

Dear Maddie-Miss-Sassy-Pants,

Today you are 18 moths old, and you have sass in your pants.

You are into full on complete sentences. Your favorite is "I wanna (insert object)!" and "I did it!" You also say, "Uh-Oh, I dropped it" as your hurl an object across the room. You can finally say "Madison," but still like to answer "NAME!" when I ask you to tell me your name.

You are beginning to understand teasing and joking around. You are even starting to do it yourself. The most common way you do this is to mimic a noise someone makes and then go back and forth with them. The facial expressions you make when you are teasing or joking is very mischievous, with your little eyebrow raised and your lips poked out. You have such a cute little sense of humor.

You've been quite the trooper about the fact that we are moving to Texas. The only clue you have is that Mommy and Daddy (and Papa!) have been cleaning up after you non stop. Also, much to your dismay, NONE of your toys are out in view. You KNOW where they are hidden and you say, "OPEN, peas!" when you want your toys. Your dad is a little over the top when it comes to keeping things clean. I joke that he follows you around with a bottle of windex to clean up your little paw prints.

You are very much into coloring. You say, "I wanna cool-er" and run over to the drawer where your markers (a magic kind that only makes marks on a specific type of paper) and paper are hidden. You HATE IT when the cap is on the pen and whine for me to open it. You want to carry your magic markers around everywhere you go...sans cap. This, of course, worries you father. He is afraid a "clear and shiny mark" will appear where your marker touches the couch, wall or floor.

A favorite game these days is the "baby game" where you pick up a toy baby or stuffed animal and wrap it up in dish cloth or blanket and carry it around. There is a very specific way you want it done, and if it is messed up AT ALL, the process must begin all over again. This could take a very long time.

You are also all about watering the plants and flowers outside, and want to do it every day when you get home from Ms. Tippi's house. I think it is just a general fascination with water, not really with watering anything. Last Sunday, the three of us went for an early morning walk and it had rained the night before. This meant that there were tons of puddles on the sidewalk. You must have said "WATER!" about one bazillion times. Not only do you like to point and squat down to take a close look at the water, but also like to do a little flashdance right in the middle of the puddle. You just laughed and laughed as you splashed the water all over. Slapping the puddles was also a favorite. After about 30 minutes of puddle dancing, we told you it was time to go. "NOOOOoooooo!" you screamed and cried the rest of the way home. "Waaaater! I wanna pay in waaaater."

Just last month you would forget about something that we took away just a few minutes later if we distracted you with something else. That trick no longer works. You agonize about what it was like just minutes before doing what you wanted, and how horrible we are that you are not playing anymore. It's not really pleasant, and I'd prefer you forget (like the fishes) and just move on with the next activity.

By the way, look what a hottie your mama is! Your dad, very handsome too, is one lucky dude. We went out on a fancy date this month. You aren't allowed to go anyplace with me when I wear a silk dress anyway. Plus, you would have been way too preoccupied with looking at my beeboos, just like your dad was.

We love you very much, and will teach you the ways of a Texan very soon. You have a lot to learn.


Monday, June 12, 2006

We are moving to Texas!

Wow. I can't believe I just told the Internet that we are moving to Texas. It's hard to believe myself. It's true! We really don't know when yet, but Zak starts a new job in San Antonio on July 3rd. Maddie and are staying behind until the house sells.

Zak and I met in Texas, and all of his family, all our friends, and my dad live there. This move is for Maddie, and damn it, she better appreciate it!

Over the last 18 months, it has been increasingly difficult to be so far from our family and friends. We were okay when it was just Zak and I because it's so easy to hop on a plane to see family, but even then we didn't see everyone often enough. We mostly struggled with Maddie not knowing her grandparents. They come for short visits, but we want Maddie to KNOW them like we knew our grandparents as children.

This change in our lives will not be easy, and I am sure I will use this forum to bitch and whine about it all. Leaving the wonderful Ms. Tippi is BY FAR the hardest part about our decision. She is a huge part of our lives, and we will miss her terribly. She's cared for Maddie since she was 10 weeks old.

Leaving my co-workers and job, who I REALLY care about is enough to make me start crying right now. I LOVE my job (except for the commute) and all the people I work with are incredible. Many of them have become great mentors and will be life long friends. I hope to stay involved at the place I work in some way, even from San Antonio.

It's hard. The house goes on the market today, and we've been working our tails off getting it ready. We have a lot of crap that needed to be hidden. That is why I haven't been blogging a lot recently. I couldn't really think of anything to write about except this, but I couldn't spill the beans here until I told my Chicago friends and employer.

Everything happens for a reason.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

In the garden

I have been fighting a pretty bad cold over the last 4 days. Maddie had a mild version of it last week, and so did Zak. I got the worst of it, by far. The problem is that it is getting worse, not better.

I went to the doctor on Monday, when it was still in its infancy stage. He ho hummed and told me that I didn't have an infection(yet), but one was brewing. He gave me an antibiotic, and told me to hold off on filling it until my symptoms got worse. Um, can I fill it now? My nose is a faucet, my head is living in a cave, my ears feel like I've been rocking out at a Quiet Riot concert all night. On top of it all, Zak says, "you're irritable." He says this in a way that will not get him in trouble. He doesn't say, "your a bitchy whiney nag," but I think that is really what he feels.

This post was supposed to be about Maddie playing in the back yard last weekend. I got these super cute photos, and since I've been neglecting you, Internet, here they are for your viewing pleasure:

Maddie likes to water the plants. She says "water?" over and over again. If she sees that water spilled on to the deck or concrete, she says, "clean? wash?" insisting on a paper towel so she can soak up the excess water. She's her father's daughter all right.

Monday, June 05, 2006

I wanna __________!

Maddie has been bursting at the seams to communicate her first (totally understandable) full sentence in which she will insert anything she wants to do. Her sentences always end with an exclamation point because SHE! MEANS! IT! AND! WANTS! IT! NOW!

I wanna cracker!
I wanna go 'side!
I wanna walk!
I wanna ice!
I wanna juice!
I wanna balloon!
I wanna go, go go!

Incidentally, when she wants to go for a walk, she will can only stand to be in the stroller for a short time and then wants to walk the rest of the way. She's actually pretty good about it and stays on the path only to occasionally stop and pick up a stick or rock or look closely at a leaf. On Saturday, she must have walked by herself for nearly a quarter to half mile! The Girl LOVES to be outside.

We took her shopping and out to eat several times over the weekend. She hasn't been a good eater at restaurants, no matter what we feed her. Her Saturday lunch at a hamburger place featured raisins....that's it. Her Sunday lunch at a BBQ place featured oyster crackers....nothing else. We put all kinds of options for her, but she just refuses. We've decided we are okay with that, and she can eat what she wants. I'm not going to battle her over food.

Side Note: Tippi called me today and asked me if Maddie has ever eaten raw carrots, broccoli, and cauliflower. Um, that would be a big "NO WAY!" Maddie, of course, was happily eating these raw veggies dipped in a dill veggie dip "all afternoon." I'm convinced that if it wasn't for Tippi, Maddie would still weigh 7 lbs.

On the way back from the restaurant yesterday she was very fussy and mad that we were in the car for too long. She pointed out the window at every pond, "WATER!" and park, "ARK!" she saw, and "BIRD!", urging us to stop.

"I wanna walk! I wanna play!"

"Maddie, I'm sorry, we're almost home and when we get there it is time for a nap."

She wasn't happy with my response. "NO! I wanna my...PA PA!" she yelled.

She said this with such attitude, like, if you don't give me what I want, I'm just going to ask PaPa and he will do it because he is the boss of you.

Hmpf! You don't want to play that card with me just yet, sista.

Thursday, June 01, 2006


Not feeling very bloggy these days. I'm sorry I have not posted since Friday. BAD BLOGGER, BAD!

We have lots going on right now, and we're really busy around the house and with the Madster.

My dad came to visit for Memorial Day weekend. It was great to see him, and especially helpful to have an extra pair of hands (body and brain) on hand to entertain The Girl. She seems to only want me these days. She had a fever on Saturday, teething, I think, and only wanted me. She whined and whined just for me to hold her, then she whined more about that. Can't seem to make her happy. She was even fussy at Ms. Tippi's houses--which NEVER happens.

We spent a lot of time outside this weekend. Maddie was playing on the deck with us, and fell, head first, down two steps. She bumped her head on the wood deck, then landed on the concrete. She can usually navigate the steps pretty well, but lost her balance on the slightly uneven deck surface. Me, Zak and my dad were all out there with her, but none of us were close enough to catch her.

Yesterday when I went to pick her up, she was playing on Ms. Tippi's glider/rocking chair. She is very into climbing these days. She thought it was so fun to rock back and forth on the glider. She got brave and stood up. I just barely caught her leg as she, purposefully, threw herself over the arm of the chair. She laughed and thought it was funny to scare me.

TWO seconds later, she did it again, only this time, I wasn't quick enough to catch her. She went over the chair, head first and landed on her head, rolled her neck backwards, and fell onto her back. It all happened in slow motion.

The playroom at Ms.Tippi's house is covered in 1 inch of foamy padded floors. Thank God.

I honestly thought she may have broken her neck, I was in such shock, and I didn't know what to do. Maddie just laid there and cried. I didn't want to pick her up in case she did actually injure her neck. Ms. Tippi and the other kids just gathered around and stared at her. It took her about 4 minutes before she would stand up. I think she wondered why we were all staring at her.

She is fine, and played and played for the rest of the evening. She got lots of extra attention from me, and we went for an extra long walk when we got home. I felt pretty bad.

Maddie learned a lesson:
Don't dive head first off a chair make your mommy laugh, or off the deck for fun. It hurts.

I learned that this won't be the last time she falls down, but good Lord, I am hoping for some scraped knees and a bruised ego next time!

No more headers, please.